Pittsburgh / Allison Park Senior Care Blog

What Games Should Seniors Play for Improved Brain Function?

By Erin Carll

Caregivers in Cheswick PA

When you think of games like jump rope and puzzles you are probably reminded of your childhood days. But did you know that these childhood games can also be beneficial to an elder’s brain health? Research shows that older adults who play these games have a healthy mind and body, which is similar to that of an adult who never stopped playing these games.

Participating in these activities is also a great way to keep your aging parent healthy without them even realizing they are exercising. As with any exercise program, make sure your elderly parent checks with their doctor before participating in the following games.

Jigsaw Puzzles

Jigsaw puzzles can actually help calm the elder’s nerves and reduce feelings of anxiety, worry, and stress. It can also reduce their risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.


This is a game of strategy that will get your loved one thinking about what their next move will be. Chess can reduce the risk of dementia, depression, and memory loss by thinking and moving the pieces quickly. Stroke victims have also found that this game helps them recover from their condition.

Board Games

Board games can be used to improve the senior’s ability to focus on the task at hand, while also providing some entertainment value. Board games can also help enhance their memory and keep their mind sharp.

Jump Rope

This activity is especially useful at keeping the heart healthy because it is considered a cardiovascular exercise. It can help elders stay in shape, lose weight, and tone muscles in order to look and feel their best.

Outdoor Games

A simple game of baseball or Frisbee can do wonderful things for your loved one’s health. Playing outdoors will help the body release endorphins, also known as joy endorphins. These endorphins will boost the body’s immune system and lower stress levels.


Everyone enjoys a good joke to make them laugh. Riddles and word puzzles are excellent for cognitive and oral expression, as well as stimulating conversation and a reduced risk of depression.

These games can improve the senior’s overall health and well-being, but can become pretty lonely if they do not have anyone to play these games with. A senior care provider can provide companionship for your loved one and assistance with tasks the elder is unable to do by themselves. Encourage your senior loved one to try out these activities for their mental and physical health.


If you or an aging loved one are considering help for family caregivers in Cheswick, PA, please call the caring staff at Home Helpers. Call today (412) 201-0712.